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Interview with Franck Divay

Home > Designer Interviews > Franck Divay

Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Franck Divay (FD) for A’ Design Awards and Competition. You can access the full profile of Franck Divay by clicking here.

Interview with Franck Divay at Thursday 1st of May 2014
Franck Divay
FS: Could you please tell us more about your art and design background? What made you become an artist/designer? Have you always wanted to be a designer?
FD: From the early age, I always wanted to be a cabinetmaker. So I naturally studied joinery for six years. Quickly, I felt I was missing something in the teaching of this business. The creative side, that would allow me to go beyond the status of mere running in tasks that are entrusted to me. The five years training in industrial design was the answer to this problem.

FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
FD: The inoow design studio has been created after my studies. This business creation project was for me the solution in order to continue to practice both joinery and design. Two trades that have become over time, complementary and inseparable. The activities are multiples. Accompanying the companies in their desire to develop new products, by proposing design services. Manufacturing bespoke furniture, both for individuals and professionals. Developing the collection of objects (furniture, lamps, items for home, etc..) made in self-edition. This activity illustrates the inoow design know-how.

FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
FD: It is easy to understand, because of my training, that my area of expertise is furniture. More generally, I like to draw objects for the home equipment. Whenever possible, I try to incorporate into all my creations the wood material.

FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
FD: Ydin stool, which I just got this Silver A 'Design Award, is definitely my favorite creation! I also like all my other ones, but this one has a special flavor. After several months of designing and developing, the project was two times close to be bought by manufacturers who wanted to make it. I could not leave the stool without seeing the light. It is from that project I decided to get into self-edition and develop my own objects collection.

FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
FD: The first thing designed for a company was a collection of three planters. This had initiated the beginning of a long collaboration with Cerland company in France, specialist of garden decorating and landscaping with wood.

FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
FD: Wood is without question my favorite material. I also use many derivatives such as plywood material, which I try to give to it a little more nobility in playing with its aesthetic qualities. I also love discovering new materials through experimentation. The stool Ydin has been created for example after the discovery of fiber-reinforced ultra-high performance concrete. I remain very attached to the multitude of craft skills and hand work. But new technologies also fascinate me and I love discovering new processes. I can easily spend several hours watching machines running on online videos. The studio is now equipped with a 3D printer. The machine is almost tamed and the objective is to take advantage of this new tool available in future creations in self-edition.

FS: When do you feel the most creative?
FD: There are always several projects under way. I do not have well-defined creative period, but the mind is always alert and awake. The inspiration or solution to a problem feeds with various everyday things. Depending on the context, a single word heard in a conversation can make a contribution has of piece of the puzzle.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
FD: The satisfaction to see that all assumptions put on the paper work.

FS: What makes a design successful?
FD: A successful design is a creation that meets the expectations of the various stakeholders in connection with the product.

FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
FD: The first two things I take into consideration at the vision of a design, are the technical feasibility and the sum of resources needed to achieve it. Beautiful photorealistic 3D renderings do not interest me.

FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
FD: Today, taking into account the environmental aspect in the life cycle of a product, has become essential. Manufacturers must now meet the expectations of consumers who are becoming more and more eco-friendly in their purchases.

FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
FD: A selection of my creations was visible during the last exhibition organized by "desDesigners" in France. The tour took place from September to November 2013 and made ​​a stop in six French cities. A new edition will be held this year in 2014. I would like as well to present my work in a European capital in the coming months.

FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
FD: I subscribe to about a hundred RSS feeds that deliver to me a daily dose of information in quite different fields. I also updates as regularly as possible a monitoring space about furniture design, innovation and in relation with wood creations. Experimentation and manufacturing in the workshop also enable me to nurture creativity.

FS: How would you describe your design style? What made you explore more this style and what are the main characteristics of your style? What's your approach to design?
FD: I do not think I have a well-defined style. It evolves over time and is based on the feeling of the moment. Initially, my creations were much based on geometry. At the moment, I am more inspired by organic forms. A rapprochement to nature somehow: raw materials, soft shapes, more natural colors, etc. “The signing of inoow design is the wood combination with other materials such as plywood, metal, or more unexpected, concrete! A cocktail often enhanced with a touch of color.”

FS: Where do you live? Do you feel the cultural heritage of your country affects your designs? What are the pros and cons during designing as a result of living in your country?
FD: I am currently living in a French countryside village. In the country, cultural and artistic heritage are still very present. If we focus in the furniture field that I'm particularly interested in, the great past epochs have been marked by several styles. Still a few years ago, most manufacturers were attached to reproduce style furniture from the past and the designers work did not find its place in this ecosystem. Today, small and medium-sized furniture companies diversify their collections to meet the needs of a new consumers generation. New editors also emerging and capitalize on businesses know-how, for "Made in France" products.

FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
FD: The ability to meet customer expectations, because there is no project without outlet. The ability to project each creation in a manufacturing process, because it is the only way to give it life.

FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
FD: It depends on the project's importance. It will also be based on the knowledge of the application domain for which the project will be intended. I operate by priority and projects are delivered according to deadlines established at the beginning.

FS: What was your most important job experience?
FD: I think the most striking experience was one of my first internships. It was an internship that took place during my training as a joiner in a company making layout projects. I was about 16-17 years old, and began to give me some responsibilities by entrusting me the manufacturing of bespoke parts and by autonomy. It is also during these first working experiences that appeared the desire to train as a designer.

FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
FD: I have interests for furniture design, and more generally creating products intended for equipping the living environment.

FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
FD: The development of the inoow design business and especially the commercialization and the distribution of self-edition made products part.

FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
FD: The only things I can say is that there is a light and a collection of tables currently being finalized and will be made in self-edition. I also continue the thinking setting up with the stairs manufacturer Raux-Gicquel, on the scrap wood valorisation coming from their production. I also have several requests for customized products for different private individuals.

FS: How can people contact you?
FD: I can be contacted via the dedicated form on the website www.inoowdesign.fr or directly by email at contact@inoowdesign.fr


FS: Thank you for providing us with this opportunity to interview you.

A’ Design Award and Competitions grants rights to press members and bloggers to use parts of this interview. This interview is provided as it is; DesignPRWire and A' Design Award and Competitions cannot be held responsible for the answers given by participating designers.


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